MIT Leaders for Global Operations program names Thomas Roemer as new executive director

Former MIT Sloan assistant professor will assume new role in July.

February 13, 2014

Thomas Roemer

Thomas Roemer

The MIT Leaders for Global Operations (LGO) program’s governing board has named Thomas Roemer, a former assistant professor of operations at MIT Sloan and faculty member at the University of California at San Diego, as the program’s executive director.

Roemer succeeds MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Donald Rosenfield, who has served as LGO’s program director since its inception in 1988. Rosenfield announced his plans to retire last year. Roemer will assume his new role this July.

MIT's LGO program brings together the rigor and technical expertise of the MIT School of Engineering, the business and leadership practice of MIT Sloan, and the real-world experience of the LGO manufacturing and operations industry partners. Students earn two degrees in two years: either an MBA or a Master of Science in Management degree from MIT Sloan, and a Master of Science from one of seven participating departments in the School of Engineering. Through coursework and a half-year internship, students learn and bring to industry new guiding principles for world-class manufacturing and operations.

“My fellow governing board members and I are delighted to welcome Thomas Roemer as the new executive director of LGO,” said LGO governing board co-chairman Jeff Wilke, senior vice president of consumer business at Amazon.com and a 1993 graduate of the MIT LGO program. “Thomas possesses deep knowledge of and passion for LGO. This important program will be in good hands.”

Governing board co-chairman Mick Maurer, president of Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, said, “Thomas brings to LGO a wide range of operational and analytical knowledge and experience. That, and his enthusiasm, will serve the program well.”

At the University of California, San Diego, Roemer’s role has bridged the worlds of management and engineering, much as it will at MIT. Since 2012, he has been the associate director of the Architecture-Based Enterprise Systems Engineering Program, which draws from the university’s Jacobs School of Engineering and Rady School of Management. He came to the university in 2006 as assistant professor of innovation, technology, and operations at the Rady School.

Roemer holds a PhD in operations and technology management from the Anderson Graduate School of Management at University of California, Los Angeles and a joint degree in management and manufacturing engineering from the Technische Universität Berlin in Germany. He has published journal articles on product and process design and supply chain management.

While serving on the MIT Sloan faculty from 2000 to 2006, Roemer taught and advised numerous LGO students and worked with LGO partner companies. At MIT Sloan, he taught courses in operations management and in product design and development. Before earning his PhD, Roemer was a visiting scholar at the University of California, Irvine Graduate School of Management.

“As a longtime admirer and supporter of the LGO program, I'm excited and honored to serve as its next director and follow in the footsteps of Don Rosenfield, whom I greatly respect,” Roemer said. “I'm looking forward to working with our truly exceptional students, faculty, staff and corporate partners to help shape the future of the program and the engineering and management innovations yet to come.”

“I’m delighted to welcome Thomas back to MIT,” said Georgia Perakis, professor of operations research and operations management and LGO’s faculty co-director for management. “His depth of knowledge about LGO and the Institute will make him an effective leader for the program.”

Perakis co-chaired the search committee with David Simchi-Levi, professor of civil and environmental engineering and engineering systems and LGO’s faculty co-director for engineering.

“Thomas’ background in engineering and management and his experience in working with industry are key for LGO,” Simchi-Levi said. “He’ll be an important voice for the program as it looks to the future.”